Man, 67, banned from driving

News from the courts.
News from the courts.

A 67-year-old man was stopped for drink-driving after he had too much at the Sunderland Airshow.

Melvin O’Neil was reported to police by members of the public who saw him driving erratically on the A19, South Northumbria Magistrates’ Court heard.

“He was heading north,” said Paul Anderson prosecuting. “Police caught up with him at the toll booths of the Tyne Tunnel. It was obvious to officers he was intoxicated.

“His breath alcohol level was later found to be 109, more than three times the legal limit for driving.

“Mr O’Neil is a man of previous good character, as are so many of those who appear for this type of offence.”

O’Neil, of Belvedere, North Shields, admitted driving with excess alcohol on July 22.

The court heard he still works a few days a week as a pipe fitter because he enjoys it.

Representing himself, O’Neil said: “I made a big mistake that day. It won’t happen again.”

He was given a 12-month community order, including 80 hours of unpaid work, banned from driving for two years and ordered to pay £170 costs.